Financial advisor offers tips on having emergency fund in place during pandemic

Posted at 1:06 PM, Sep 29, 2020

VIRGINIA BEACH, Va. - As COVID-19 continues to wreak havoc on nearly all facets of life – your emergency fund is more important than ever.

"The industry standard is three to six months of living expenses in some kind of reserve," said Phil Maliniak, Financial Advisor with Wealth Avenue in Virginia Beach.

Maliniak says putting together a nest egg is easy.

"It starts with understanding what you are doing each month a clear vision of where does my money go," he said.

He says to start by paying yourself first – then run down a list of all your monthly expenses – and see what surplus is left.

"Make a checklist of each month, where does it all go, and how do I get my hands on the difference," he stated.

To build a surplus, Maliniak says look at things you can ditch. Daily cups of coffee, donuts, streaming services, online shopping, etc. He says then look for incentives.

"There are little tricks bank accounts and credit card companies have come out with as they pay you every time you buy something or there are cashback options," he said.

Another tip, since the virus is limiting what we all can do – stash away the extra income you would have used to go to restaurants, movie theaters, bars, concerts, or sporting events. He says also considers refinancing your loans since the Federal Reserve has slashed interest rates.

"If you create a reserve, you can create your own bank, and then you can borrow from your bank anytime and determine your own rates," he said.

This story was first reported by Chelsea Donovan at WTKR in Norfolk, Virginia.